Die zweite Kammer und der Regionalismus in der italienischen Verfassungsdebatte
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DeskriptorenItalienische Verfassung Zweikammernsystem und Regionalismus Senat Verfassungsreform des italienischen Regionalismus
In the Italian Constituent Assembly (1946–1947) the attempts made at relating the composition of the Upper Chamber (the Senate of the Republic) to the new regional architecture produced very disappointing results. It is in fact true that it was attempted to make the structure of the body reflect the country's regionalization. But the rules introduced to produce that result failed to transform the Senate into a Chamber representing the regions. That is why the Italian Senate is normally perceived as a political Chamber that is no different in qualitative terms from the Lower Chamber – the Chamber of Deputies. The radical constitutional reform of regionalism (2001), achieved in part through decidedly federally-oriented constitutional techniques, kept the rules governing the Senate practically unchanged, both as regards its composition and its powers. The new constitutional reform, defeated in a national referendum held on 25–26 June 2006, tried to transform the Senate. But the results were very disappointing. Constitutionalists in fact agreed almost unanimously that the arrangements regarding the Upper House and its role probably represented the worst part of the reform. The project's rejection by the national referendum will probably not spell the end of the reform process. Many politicians both from the majority and opposition believe that the subject of constitutional reform should be brought back. But – in the opinion of this Author – it is unlikely that such a debate will succeed in ensuring that the Senate's composition correctly reflect the country's regional structure. It is fact extremely improbable that any substantial changes are made to the two rules which would need to be radically reviewed in that context: the rules concerning the regions' fundamentally proportional representation and the direct election of Senators.
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